• Pamela Brill

2018 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Award Finalists Unveiled by The Toy Association

play-do kitchen creationsThe toy, game and license finalists for the 2018 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards have been unveiled. The 122 finalists were announced at an exclusive press event held this evening to help kick off the second annual Play Fair in New York City.

“Each and every one of the TOTY finalists have brought joy, laughter, and learning to children around the world. From classic board games to innovative tech toys, these playthings represent the ‘best of the best’ in the world of toys and games … So, you might even find some great holiday gift ideas among this evening’s finalists!” said Steve Pasierb, The Toy Association’s president & CEO, at the press event.

“The TOTY Awards program supports the Toy Industry Foundation’s work to deliver toys to millions of children in need – whether they are living in foster care, impoverished, recovering in hospitals from a traumatic illness, or facing other difficulties,” added Pasierb. “We are thrilled to continue this time-honored tradition and look forward to celebrating the big winners and the meaningful work of the Foundation at the February TOTY gala at the Ziegfeld Theater!”

This year’s finalists were selected from over 600 nominees submitted by more than 150 companies of all sizes. Twenty judges, including toy and play experts, retailers, academics, and journalists, reviewed and ranked the products in specific categories relevant to their areas of expertise. The judges then participated in a live discussion to determine the finalists in each category. They considered each product’s creativity, design, play value, and marketing.

One winner in each category, as well as the “Toy of the Year” award winner and the “People’s Choice” winner (based solely on consumer votes), will be announced at the TOTY Awards gala to be held on Friday, February 16, 2018 at the Ziegfeld Theatre in New York City. The celebration will help kick-off the 115th North American International Toy Fair, and will include the induction of toy industry trailblazers into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame.

This year’s finalists include:

ACTION FIGURE OF THE YEAR

  • IAmElemental's Series 2/Wisdom Lunch Box Carrying Case with Complete Set of 7 Action Figures & Accessories (IAmElemental)
  • Imaginext® DC Super Friends™ BatBot Xtreme (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Marvel Guardians of the Galaxy Dancing Groot Figure (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • PJ Masks Duet Figure Packs (Just Play Products)
  • Star Wars Forces of Destiny Adventure Figures (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • Stikbot (ZING)
  • WWE® Superstars Action Figures (Mattel, Inc.)

COLLECTIBLE OF THE YEAR

  • Disney Pixar Cars 3 Diecast Cars (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Fingerlings (WowWee USA, Inc.)
  • Funko's Mystery Minis (Funko, LLC)
  • Hatchimals Colleggtibles 4 Pack (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • L.O.L. Surprise! (MGA Entertainment)
  • Pikmi Pop! Surprise Pack (Moose Toys)
  • The LEGO Batman Movie Minifigures (LEGO Systems, Inc.)

CONSTRUCTION TOY OF THE YEAR

  • K'NEX THRILL RIDES: Web Weaver Roller Coaster™ Building Set (K'NEX Brands)
  • LEGO® Star Wars BB-8™ (LEGO Systems, Inc.)
  • Magformers Log Cabin 87Pc Set (Magformers)
  • Mayka Toy Block Tape (Zuru)
  • Meccano M.A.X (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Silent Mary (LEGO Systems, Inc.)
  • VEX Robotics BattleBots Minotaur (HEXBUG)

CREATIVE TOY OF THE YEAR

  • 3Doodler Start Powerpuff Yourself Pen Set (3Doodler)
  • K'NEX Imagine: Power & Play 50 Model Motorized Building Set (K'NEX Brands)
  • LEGO Make Your Own Movie (Klutz)
  • Magnaflex (WowWee USA, Inc.)
  • Nickelodeon Slime Deluxe Slimy Creations (Cra-Z-Art)
  • Oonies Starter Pack (Moose Toys)
  • Star Wars Droid Inventor Kit (LittleBits)

DOLL OF THE YEAR

  • BABY ALIVE SWEET TEARS BABY Doll (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • Barbie® Fashionista™ Ken Dolls (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Disney Princess Dance Code Belle (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • DreamWorks Spirit Riding Free Spirit & Lucky Deluxe Feeding Set (Just Play Products)
  • JoJo Siwa Singing Doll (Just Play Products)
  • Luvabella (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Wonder Crew Superhero Will (PlayMonster)

GAME OF THE YEAR

  • Beasts of Balance (Sensible Object)
  • Boom Blast Stix (Moose Toys)
  • Happy Salmon (North Star Games LLC)
  • HEARING THINGS (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • Roller Coaster Challenge (ThinkFun Inc.)
  • Soggy Doggy (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Ultra Dash (PlayMonster)

INFANT/TODDLER TOY OF THE YEAR

  • GearZooz™ Roll & Roar Animal Train™ (VTech)
  • Little Tikes Light ‘n Go 3-in-1 Sports Zone (MGA Entertainment)
  • Magformers My First Pastel 30Pc Set (Magformers)
  • Mega Bloks Elephant Parade (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Mirari Shellby (PlayMonster)
  • Pop-a-Balls™ Push & Pop Bulldozer™ (VTech)
  • Strolly Bike (Yvolution)
  • Teddy Ruxpin (Wicked Cool Toys)

INNOVATIVE TOY OF THE YEAR

  • DROPMIX Music Gaming System (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • HEXBUG BattleBots Arena (HEXBUG)
  • Hot Wheels MindRacers (Osmo)
  • Klask (Buffalo Games Inc.)
  • Lightseekers Starter Pack (TOMY International)
  • Rubie's Jurassic World T-Rex Inflatable Costume (Rubie's Costume Company, Inc.)
  • Think & Learn Teach 'n Tag Movi™ (Mattel, Inc.)

LICENSE OF THE YEAR

  • Disney Pixar’s Cars 3 (Disney Consumer Products & Interactive Media)
  • Hatchimals™ (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Nickelodeon Slime (Nickelodeon Consumer Products)
  • PAW Patrol (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Peppa Pig (Entertainment One)
  • PJ Masks (Entertainment One)
  • Star Wars (Disney Consumer Products & Interactive Media)

OUTDOOR TOY OF THE YEAR

  • Bunch O Balloons Filler Soaker (Zuru)
  • Disc Jock-e (Tucker Toys)
  • Luke Skywalker's Landspeeder (Radio Flyer)
  • NERF N-STRIKE ELITE ACCUSTRIKE ALPHAHAWK Blaster (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • RECOIL (Skyrocket)
  • Sky Viper V2450 GPS Streaming Video Drone (Skyrocket)
  • Watermelon Ball (PlaSmart Inc.)

PLAYSET TOY OF THE YEAR

  • Ben 10 Rustbucket Transforming Alien Playset (Playmates Toys)
  • Fisher-Price® Shimmer and Shine™ Magical Light-up Genie Palace (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Go! Go! Smart Wheels® Race & Play Adventure Park™ (VTech)
  • HEXBUG nano Space Cosmic Command (HEXBUG)
  • Hot Wheels® Super Ultimate Garage (Mattel, Inc.)
  • My Fairy Garden Magical Cottage (PlayMonster)
  • PLAYMOBIL Pharaoh's Pyramid (Playmobil U.S.A. Inc.)
  • Shopkins Shopville Super Mall (Moose Toys)

PLUSH OF THE YEAR

  • Disney Junior Minnie’s Walk and Play Puppy (Just Play Products)
  • Dolce Activity Zebra (Magformers)
  • Funko's SuperCute Plushies (Funko, LLC)
  • Peppy Pets (Commonwealth Toy & Novelty Co., Inc.)
  • Pikmi Pops Surprise! Mega Pop (Moose Toys)
  • Storytime Rhymes Sheep™ (VTech)
  • Surprizamals (Beverly Hills Teddybear)

PRESCHOOL TOY OF THE YEAR

  • Beat Bugs™ Musical Submarine (Blip Toys LLC)
  • Disney Junior Doc McStuffins All-in-One Nursery (Just Play Products)
  • PAW Patrol My Size Lookout Tower (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • PLAY-DOH MAGIC OVEN Set (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • Racing Adventures Mickey (Just Play Products)
  • Scoop & Learn Ice Cream Cart™ (LeapFrog)
  • Thomas & Friends™ Super Station™ (Mattel, Inc.)

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

  • Beach House Group (Antsy Pants™ Build & Play™ Kits)
  • Pai Technology Inc. (Circuit Conductor)
  • Move2play (Fuzzy Flyers)
  • Bevy & Dave (History Makers Puzzle Block Set)
  • YULU Toys (Operation: Escape)
  • FlyCatcher Inc. (smART sketcher)
  • WeCool (WeCool)

SPECIALTY TOY OF THE YEAR

  • American Girl® Logan™ Doll (Mattel, Inc.)
  • Creative Cosmetics Lab (Thames & Kosmos)
  • Fidget Spinner (TopTrenz)
  • HEXBUG CuddleBots (HEXBUG)
  • LEGO® Star Wars™ Millennium Falcon™ (LEGO Systems, Inc.)
  • Mirari Juballees (PlayMonster)
  • SmartMax My First Animal Train (Smart Toys and Games, Inc.)
  • Zipes™ Speed Pipes (Neat-Oh! International, LLC)

TECH TOY OF THE YEAR

  • Circuit Cubes (Circuit Cubes)
  • Cue (Wonder Workshop)
  • LEGO® BOOST Creative Toolbox (LEGO Systems, Inc.)
  • Piper Computer Kit (Piper)
  • Robotics Workshop (Thames & Kosmos)
  • SoundMoovz (Cra-Z-Art)
  • VRSE (Skyrocket)

VEHICLE OF THE YEAR

  • Air Hogs Hyper Drift Drone (Spin Master Ltd.)
  • Anki OVERDRIVE: Fast & Furious Edition (Anki)
  • Automoblox SC1 Chaos and HR5 Scorch 2-Pack (PlayMonster)
  • Drone Force Angler Attack (Alpha Group, US LLC)
  • NERF NITRO MOTOFURY RAPID RALLY Set (Hasbro, Inc.)
  • PAW Patrol Sea Patroller (Spin Master Ltd.
  • PLAYMOBIL Ghostbusters™ Ecto-1 (Playmobil U.S.A. Inc.)
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Pamela BrillPamela Brill | Editor-at-Large, Gifts and Decorative Accessories

Pamela Brill, the proud mother of two young daughters, has been writing about parenting and children's products for over a decade. Before she began her freelance writing career, she served at the helm of two industry publications: Small World, which specialized in baby products, and Playthings, which is now part of Gifts & Decorative Accessories. She is currently an Editor-at-Large for Gifts & Decorative Accessories. Her previous blog postings can be viewed at www.talkingwalnut.com

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